Every year Martin Luther King, Jr., (MLK) day is recognized as a day to be charitable, attend parades and luncheons to celebrate the iconic legends legacy. Kings legacy is honored with speeches from presidents and scholars around the world while students recite King’s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech promising economic freedom and civil rights for black people to end racism in the United States.
On the First Coast, the myriad of activities is not different. A day off for many, residents throughout the city indulged in a variety of activities ranging from celebrations and reflections to community service.
The MLK Foundation held their 42nd annual MLK Day Celebration parade in downtown Jacksonville, which included a variety of entertainment and workshop activities.
The Gamma Rho Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha, Sorority, Inc. honored the 15th anniversary of their sorority and the King holiday by spending the day “on” with volunteerism and parade participation.
Reigniting the dream on the northside at Charles Boobie Clark Park, the ‘Old Timers Flag Football’ league bought out their grills and families to honor City of Jacksonville retiree Ronald “Track” Elps for organizing the inaugural old-timers MLK neighborhood celebration and commemoration day. “I’m proud to see the families out today. I think we’re too old now to play football! We have to stay focus on the issues plaguing our country and neighborhoods,” said organizer Nathanial Farley.
Although the King Holiday is celebrated around the world, blacks are still underrepresented in health care, tech/stem careers, news/board rooms and college campuses across the nation. “This is a day to not only celebrate King, but to be proud of our heritage and to continue making an impact in all careers and issues affecting us and to solidify future generation birthright,” said parade attendee Nishsa Young. Shown